The end of the 19th chapter
“Dinner is ready in the dining room, your majesty.” said Mee, and turned to lead the way.
“I want the parrot to be with me at dinner.” said Rhoda. And Mee took the pole with the parrot at its end and stepped with it into the dining room. On the table in the dining room, there were a lot of steaming dishes, and in each of them, there was some kind of dish with an appetizing smell and delicious colors.
Rhoda sat at the table, and for a long time was mostly busy with the food, stopping eating only to give the parrot bits and pieces that she thought might interest it, and which he took from her with a condemnatory stare, but silently. When Rhoda leaned back at the end of the meal, with that comfortable feeling that one feels at the end of a specially good and filling meal, she turned to the parrot and told it “Hey, owl, I still need to give you a name.”
The parrot snorted and didn’t answer her. She tried again:
“Hey parrot, is there a name that you prefer to be called? Think carefully, because if you do not like it later, you will not be able to change it.”
The parrot still didn’t answer, but started pecking his feathers with a movement that made it look thoughtful, so Rhoda left it alone and drank the aromatic drink that Mee had brought her.
“Whhhaaa! Ahithophel.” Said the parrot after a few minutes.
“Are you sure? It is not such a flattering name.” Rhoda said, smiling. “Are you certain that you want me to think of the counsel of Ahithophel, which means a really not good advice, every time I call you?”
“Whhhaaa! Yes.” Answered the parrot. “This way you can only blame your own stupidity every time you listen to my advice.”
Rhoda laughed out loud. “There is no doubt, Ahithophel, that in any case I will blame my stupidity. But it is not certain that only my stupidity will be blamed! If the advice I will listen to will be especially bad, I might be tempted to put the blame on you too, so be careful with what you suggest to me.”
“Whhhaaa! I suggest that you will not go on talking to me tonight.” said the parrot, pecking between the toes of its leg after each word.
This time Rhoda laughed so much that she almost cried. “I accept the counsel of Ahithophel for tonight, and I think it will not cost you so dearly.” she said when she managed to catch her breath again.
She turned to Mee and said “Please put Mr. Ahithophel in his cage, and cover it with a black cloak, so that he will sleep well tonight.”
Mee did as she was asked, and not long after sending Ahithophel to sleep, Rhoda went to sleep as well.
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